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Rand Paul doesn’t think health care bill will pass

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Kentucky Senator Rand Paul doesn’t believe Trump/Ryan/McConnellcare will make it out of the Senate. He told Fox News Sunday this morning the plan really isn’t a repeal of Obamacare.

“We won four elections on repealing ObamaCare … but this doesn’t.”

Paul is one of two Republican senators who publicly does not support the measure, arguing largely that it gives too much subsidy money to health insurance companies in the ObamaCare program.

“That is not a Republican idea, to give taxpayer money to a private industry,” Paul, a doctor, said about the bill’s so-called “temporary stabilization fund” that is now at about $200 billion…

“I’m not willing to trade Medicaid reform for an insurance company bailout, insurance company entitlement,” he said. “I don’t think Republicans should put their name on this [bill] … It’s a really bad political strategy and it’s not going to fix the problem.”

The “temporary stabilization fund” is getting a lot of attention, and for good reason. It harkens back to the late 2000s when the GOP, including McConnell and now Speaker Paul Ryan, voted in favor of bailing out certain banks under the idea of “too big to fail.” Texas Public Policy Foundation’s Chip Roy says the insurance bailout is exactly that, a bailout, and won’t really solve anything.

[T]his bill simply does not repeal Obamacare, continues Obamacare’s coverage subsidy scheme, vastly expands taxpayer-funded subsidies to insurance companies, maintains the existing regulatory architecture, and will do little to significantly reduce premiums. “This is a far cry from what the American people expected. And it will do little to alleviate the pain that millions of people are experiencing under Washington’s continued grip over our healthcare system. The Senate should abandon this endeavor and honor its promises with a full repeal of this disastrous law.”

Let’s say McConnell is successful in getting his health care bill out of the Senate, and it ends up going through the House and the White House. What happens if/when the system has to be redone again because premiums keep going up, even with the influx of government cash?

Government intervention into the marketplace didn’t help in the late 2000s, and it did force plenty of GOPers to defend their TARP votes. Ryan’s defense in a 2010 interview with The Daily Caller was because he believed immediate government intervention would prevent an even bigger government intervention later on.

“I believe we were on the cusp of a deflationary spiral which would have created a Depression. I think that’s probably pretty likely. If we would have allowed that to happen, I think we would have had a big government agenda sweeping through this country so fast that we wouldn’t have recovered from it. So in order to prevent a Depression and a complete evisceration of the free market system we have, I think it was necessary. It wasn’t a fun vote. You don’t get to choose the kind of votes you want. But I just think as far as the long term objectives that I have — which are restoring the principles of this country — I think it was necessary to prevent those principles from being really kind of wiped out for a generation.”

Comments like that, and Ryan’s support of the House health care bill, only enforce Mercatus Center Senior Research Fellow Veronique de Rugy’s belief Ryan is a free marketer, but he’s driven too much by politics. It’s interesting no one has tried to figure out where McConnell’s beliefs are, probably because he’s just the typical “Republicans should be in control of government, so they can direct where it goes,” GOP senator. It’s a kind of thinking which needs to be repealed and replaced by people who actually believe in free market, not government-directed ones.

What’s the actual solution? President Donald Trump’s suggestion of a clean Obamacare repeal is a good start, as long as the replacement isn’t the single-payer Trump advocated in the past. It won’t solve the entire problem, but it will wash away some of the government-run largesse plaguing Americans.

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